Social housing provider fined £1,000 over asbestos exposure

20th January 2015

North Devon Homes has been fined £1,000 for failing to give full details of asbestos at a property to one of its subcontractors, resulting in an employee being exposed to the deadly fibres.

The social housing provider employed Pilkington Plumbing & Heating Ltd (PPH) to refurbish the heating systems of 200 homes. However, the subcontractor was not given all the information regarding asbestos at the properties necessary, and one of its employees ended up drilling a hole into a panel containing asbestos at 3 Jubilee Close, reports northdevonjournal.co.uk.

An investigation began when the incident was reported to the Health and Safety Executive three days later. Stephen Covell, who prosecuted on behalf of the HSE, said the contractor had to use an online portal to get information about the properties, but not all the relevant documents were present.

“Some of the information was incorrect and some was absent,” he explained. “As far as 3 Jubilee Close was concerned some of the information had been put in wrongly. Its actions have increased the risk of those working on site to be exposed to asbestos.”

North Devon Homes Ltd of Westcott Road, Barnstaple, was fined £1,000 after pleading guilty to a breach of Construction Regulations. It also has to pay costs of £650, reports northdevongazette.co.uk.

On October 8 2014, Pilkington Plumbing and Heating Ltd of Pilton Street, Barnstaple, was fined £1,500 after pleading guilty to two breaches of Control of Asbestos Regulations. It too was ordered to pay costs of £642.